Oh man. Gingerbread flavored cake donuts? Ngaaaaaaaaa. The moment I saw this recipe over at Pinch of Yum I knew they were going to be super duper yumtastic.
Was I right? Of course I was.
In order to save time in the morning, the night before I combined all the dry ingredients and all the wet ingredients. This way all I had to do was combine the two and pipe the batter into the donut pan. By the the time the batter was in the pan, the oven was preheated.
Speaking of putting the batter in the pan, I used this trick my friend Julie told me about. I took a large zip bag and put it inside my large glass measuring cup. I folded the edges over the rim so it would stay in place. Then I poured the batter into the bag. This way, I didn't spill any batter on the zipper closure (or even on the counter) while I was putting the mix into the bag. Yeah baby! (You rock Julie!)
While the donuts were cooking I made the glaze. I could eat this glaze by the spoonful. Ok. So I did. It was sinfully scrumptious. I highly recommend it. Unless you are diabetic. Then don't as it is very very very sweet. No one goes into a diabetic coma on my watch.
I also advise that you wait more than 30 seconds to take the donuts out of the pan. Give them 5 min to cool in the pan and then another 5 min to cool on a rack. If you try to take them out too soon they will fight you. No one wants to fight a donut. Trust me on this one.
Also, if you dip them into the glaze when they are too warm, they soak up bunches of the glaze. If the glaze is so yummy, then why is this a bad thing? Well, it is delicious, but the glaze won't set up nice. The texture of the donut becomes a bit spongy. It's a tasty sponge, but the classically hardened glaze is better. Just have a moderate amount of patience and you will be rewarded. I'll let you have a teaspoon of mine. It's all I can spare.
Baked Gingerbread Mini Donuts from Pinch of Yum
1 cup flour (I used white whole wheat)
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
pinch of allspice
pinch of cloves
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup brown sugar, divided
1/4 cup applesauce (remember fruit = healthy!)
2 tablespoons maple syrup (I used the fake stuff)
3 tablespoons milk, divided
4 tablespoons butter, divided
1/2 cup powdered sugar
Preheat oven to 350. Mix all dry ingredients, using 1/4 cup brown sugar and setting the rest aside.
Whisk in moist ingredients, using 1 tablespoon milk and 2 tablespoons melted butter.
Pour batter into a gallon-sized plastic bag and cut the corner off. Pipe the batter into a greased mini-donut pan, filling each donut space about 1/2 full (for me, this was about 22 mini donuts). Bake for about 7-8 minutes. Remove from oven and take each donut out of the pan.
Melt 2 tablespoons butter with 1/4 cup brown sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil and boil for about 2 minutes. Add 1 tablespoon milk and bring back to a boil. Add powdered sugar, using the last tablespoon of milk to help thin out the frosting if needed. Keep over low heat (otherwise it will start to crystallize) and dunk each mini donut into the frosting. Frosting should set almost immediately.